Month: November 2007

So, this is it

Another year, another NaBloPoMo.
I had a lofty goal of 750 words each post for a total of at least 22500 words.
That was a lot of words.
It didn’t happen obviously. I’m not really sure what happened.

I suspect that I just wasn’t into it as much this year as I was last year.
Last year it was cool and new, this year, not so much.

And even when I dropped the word count I really didn’t do well.
Overall I thought my posting was poo(ish).

Basically my heart really wasn’t into it.
I’ll do better next year 🙂

Anyway, so with all that said, I would like to at least do the Free Music Friday.
This will be friends only, and each week I’ll have a few free songs for you to “sample”.
They might not even be that good, they might be warnings of what not to buy.

For the last year(or something like that) I’ve spent more on music than I have in the last 6.
That’s due to eMusic. I guess that if I’m to pay the $10 anyway, I might as well experiment with music.
Generally any given CD is about $2.50, and that’s what I’m willing to pay for something I’ve never hear of.
It’s not all that much really. It’s a safer gamble than $15-20 right?

And for the most part it’s been interesting to hear these bands that I’ve never heard of impress me in the way that most bands don’t.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I’ve discovered the new Beatles or anything, but I’ve run into some really great bands.
Or at least bands that are playing the kind of music that I like.
And in the end, isn’t that what counts?

Not sure what other weekly thing I could do. Maybe just a question of the week?
Not sure how that would play out though.
I guess I’m trying to be more interactive.
I suppose I could just write you all email 😉

If you founded a religion…

If you founded a religion…
Created by EvilAuthor on Memegen.net

The 3407th Chapter of The Church of Nonconformity

Your followers are a cloistered population,

who seldom speak to outsiders,

who work for a living just like everybody else,

who live in the present, and will try anything (and I mean anything) once or twice,

and who are often viewed as strange or wacky because of their adherence to the principles of the faith.

Your followers are nudists, but wear

modest rings

orange leotards

a hash pipe

secret ID cards

Your followers are

growing (over 100,000),

and they are trying to spread the "good word" through their good works, and by example.

Take this quiz now – it’s easy!
Who would be able to join your religion?
Only the Chosen People (as chosen by YOU!)
Anyone.
Only the Chosen People (selected on the basis of blood/genetics)
Only those who meet our standards of merit or morality.
Only those who can contribute to the growth of the organisation, financially or through hard work.
Only those who are willing to make lifestyle sacrifices and commit themselves to the faith.

5%

That’s how long(roughly) I’ve been working for IBM Canada during it’s lifetime.
It really doesn’t mean much, it was just kinda interesting to know.

In perspective, I’ve worked here for 14.1% of my lifetime(current).

Let’s have some fun with numbers!

I’ve lived in the Ottawa area for 46% of my life.
I’ve owned a dog for 4.5% of my life, but about 90% since I’ve owned a house.
I’ve been a home owner for roughly 6%, and I’ve owned a car for 27%.
Hmmm, I’ve had these shoes for 14% of my life, maybe it’s time to give them up.

I’ve liked anime(as anime) for 44%, RPGs for 75%(wow) and heavy metal for 53%.

I’ve been eating peanut butter for 81%(not constantly), sushi for 38% and beer for 88%(although there was a large gap there).

I’ve had a LJ account for 8%, but I’ve been blogging(as it were) for 25%.

And I’ve spent at least 15% of my working day on this post 😀

642

In my next life, I’d like to come back as a white fluffy dog in a good home.
This working for a living is for suckers.

Why is it that computers work the worst when you need them the most?
B suggested it’s because I poke them all day.
If I were to do that to a bear, it would eat me.
I think he’s on to something.

What’s the point of nasal medicine?
It all just goes down the back of your throat anyway.
And I think a pill would burn a lot less!

I thinkthis is my next furniture purchase.

Why do dogs have to go outside just after coming back from a walk?
They were just out there.

Why do computers never work when you want them to?
Oh wait, covered that. Bears, right.

Why do I bother setting my alarm for 6 when I snooze all the way to 7.
Every morning.

Christmas

I know this might sound like bragging, but I’m in the situation where I’m not in need of things.
By that, I mean that if I need something, I have the money to go out and get it.
Needs of course being different than wants, but you get the idea.

And that being said, my family is the same way.
We aren’t in *need* of anything.

So Christmas is always a little weird. Or at least it has been for the last few years.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always enjoyed it, I’ve always had an excellent time with my family, but the whole gift giving thing has been difficult.
Mostly because I just don’t know what to get for people, and when I do think of something, they already have it.

For the past few years, we’ve been giving one gift to one person. We draw names from a hat, and it’s up to us to buy for that person.
This avoids a whole ton of gifts for everyone.
But again, this causes problems.

This year, with my brothers new baby, he had Vanessa have decided to opt out of the whole gift exchange thing.
I can understand his reasons:
-if people need things, they go out and get them themselves
-it almost becomes a delivery service(hey, what do you want, that, ok, here it is). There’s no surprise.

So, I proposed the following for this year:
-we still draw names from a hat
-we then donate a gift in that persons name to a charity
-we also get that person a little something(like $20 little)
-but here’s the catch, you can’t ask for assistance from anyone
-the gift has to be from the giver and the giver alone

This brings back the idea of “it’s the thought that counts”.
The gift won’t be anything that will change someones life, but it will mean a little more. Or at least, that’s the intention.
And it’s giving to those that need it more than we do.
That’s a good thing.

Everyone seems to like the idea, and if it works this year, then maybe we’ll do it every year.
I wouldn’t mind that at all.
I don’t need extra stuff.

I want it…but I don’t need it 😉

Stuff

I think I’ve always wanted this blog to me more than just a blog.
If that makes sense.

I want to do weekly things. Like Monday this, and Friday that.
Something for people to keep coming back to. Mind you, I think you all come back because you’re bored 😉

I’ve toyed with the idea of a Free Music Friday. Sure, that kinda fly’s in the face of copyright, but if I only make it available to friends, then maybe I’ll be safe 🙂
Also, since I have this great web host with oodles of space, then I can actually upload songs and keep them up there more than a week at a time.
Gives people time to download.
It might be stuff I already have, stuff I found at emusic(of which I have to download my fill before they reset the counter) or just stuff.(speaking of which, that’s tomorrow!)

Beyond the free music, I’m not sure what else I could offer on a weekly basis.
I mean, I do a toy/anime news thingy, but you’d be better off going to Anime News Network yourself 😛

Maybe something tech related, or computer related.
I don’t know, I’ll have to give it some thought.

Would people like photo stuff(like a weekly photo challenge)?

Why don’t I do this, what would you like me to do on a weekly basis? Nothing obscene mind you 😉

American Gangsters

If you haven’t seen it, treat yourself and go see this.
Not only is it almost 3 hours long, it’s an amazing 3 hours.

And it never really drags, which is good and could easily happen in a 3 hour movie.
Did I mention it was 3 hours?

Tara and I were wondering why we were crossing our legs XD

And then, because there’s only one thing to do after a three hour movie, we did some grocery shopping!
And to our surprise, it was still open. The Super Store was doing this midnight thing with no tazes. Whatever, we got the roast.

And then, because there’s only one thing to do after grocery shopping at nearly midnight, we’re cleaning the garage!
That’s what I’m about to do now…joy 😉

Google

Anyone else having problems connecting to all things google today?
Seems I can get to google maps, but nothing else, including gmail 😦

EDIT: Seems it was something with the ISP. I was being assigned two different IP addresses at the same time. Now I’m on a static one and all is good with the world!

DragonForce

I was wandering around YouTube looking for “Through the fire and the flames” video, and I hit upon a tutorial that the lead guitarists did for some music magazine.
They basically went through the riffs and how they did them. Not so much of a “if you do this, you can be as cool as us” but more like a behind the scenes look.
What I liked about this, other than the speedy finger work, were the little things like “how we made this noise”.
It’s so simple in concept, and just neat that they would think of it.
Also, upon listening to the song again, right at the end there’s this weird noise. Hard to describe. But the guys let us know: whammy string break!
Guess he pulled too hard on the whammy, popped the string, and they just kept it on the album.
Neato.

That of course led me to the proper video.
These guys are all cheese, and they know it 😉
I mean, it’s great cheese, kick ass godly cheese, but cheese.
And nothing shows that better than about 3:21 into the video where they start the solos.

I just realised that this is about 3 minutes shorter then the actual song, which really isn’t a bad thing 😉

This should help explain why the GH3 song is so very hard.
Cent, I made it 1% into the expert version. I got that one note, and I got it good!
Tara and I made it 16% co-op on medium…

Of OSs

I decided that that laptop needed a cleaning and decided to try and “do it right” this time by putting on Vista and Ubuntu, and leaving enough space for images/backups.

My first task was to find my Vista DVD. That wasn’t as easy as one would think, but I found it eventually, in the office, in a gift bag. The logical place for it really.
I backed up all the useful stuff, mostly pictures and reports for Tara. There wasn’t really much else on there. I don’t use it enough to fill it with junk. I think I should start using it more.

Popped in the DVD, and did the usual hd partitioning stuff. The Vista install is mucho slicker than the XP install, and cutting up the drives was pretty easy.
The only thing it doesn’t let you do is choose how to format the drives. I mean, of course the main partition is going to be NTFS, but the others are formatted that way by default.
Other than that little gripe, the install went just fine. Once I rebooted, it found all my devices and was generally working rather well.
First thing that I did was kill that stupid User Control thing. I hate that, with a passion.
Then I did the updates, and all the other crap one associates with reinstalling Windows.
Since this was a Dell, they included a resource CD. It had extra drivers(like for the touchpad) and whatnot.
You install the Resource CD. Fine. But running it was another matter.
It kept complaining about a missing OCX file. I checked online, and Vista has all this stuff installed by default.
So I turned on ActiveX installer, and that still didn’t work.
Irritating.
Looking online, I found that you have to have the User Control ON for that CD to work!
Double Irritating.
So I did that of course, snagged all the stuff I had to snag, and turned off the User Control.
Then I installed the Games.
With Vista Business, they’re not there by default. Well, they’re there, just not there.
You have to “activate” them. Guess no one in the business world plays solitare.
But now they have Majong, chess, and a few other good games.

I wandered about the internet, looking for all the basic/useful things to download, installed them, then decided to tackle Ubuntu.

We all know of my problems with 7.10 on the main system, but since the laptop had a flashy new LCD screen, all would be good.
Right?
Happily, it was!

I goofed with the partitioning and forgot about swap space. Remashed all the partitions to solve that, and off I went.
The installer for Ubuntu is really great, and is just as easy as the Windows ones. And it gives you the same amount of options, which is to say none.
Guess that’s ok. I was used to the Mandirva screen allowing me to install just what I wanted. Oh well. No biggie.

Finished the install, did the reboot, got sound(woot) and logged in.
First things first, check for updates.
There are none.
Huh. This things been out a month, and you’re saying that no one’s updated anything in Ubuntu?
Not likely.
Oh look, forgot to setup networking. Silly me!

Open up networking, choose wireless, put in all my happy info(supports WPA now BTW) and…uh…nuthin.
I’m using WEP shared hex key. First there’s no option to choose Open or Shared key, and apparently that makes a difference.
There was no way I was going to get online wirelessly. I looked all over the net, and found a ton of info, even how to edit the interfaces file manually, but no dice.
The wired connection worked just fine though. So I’ll use that.
And update….huh…still no updates.
How…odd.

Open up the package manager, and choose all my packages(which used to be done for me), then go to the update tab…well looky looky!
They’ve turned off ALL THE UPDATES!
I have to set this manually.
Who’s likely to do this(out of the box)?
I mean, I suspect that’s why it was always set for you when you installed.
Why change that now?

This and the wireless made me want to try Kubuntu. I found that some KDE apps just work better than Gnome(and some Gnome better than KDE).
Go to Kubuntu, and the only torrent available is a DVD. woot…
So not today.

Is it just me, or has Ubuntu been going downhill for a little while now?
With a community oriented thing like Ubuntu, the forums are usually the best place to find help, and for the most part that’s true.
However, people are setting up polls with upgrade/install results, and it’s not looking good:
Generall install/upgrade: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=580852

huh, thought there were more. Maybe I kept running into this poll.
Anyway, it’s not a great vision for one’s product. But then again, forum are generally the most vocal yet in the minority when it comes to these kinds of things.

Every version of Ubuntu does something wonky for me. While everything works in one distro, it doesn’t seem to in the other. And vice versa.
I know I used wireless on this laptop in the past, and it sees the card and everything, just dosn’t want to do anythign with it.
And the update thing?
Really?
EVERY PAST version of Ubuntu had this set up automatically, at the very least for the security ones.
Why the sudden change? Was there that much of an outcry that people just didn’t want all their software to be current?
I kinda doubt that.

Anyway, I’m sure you’re bored of this post by now. Most things I write about seem to be gripes with this or that.
But that’s just the way I feel these days 😛